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As the Wall Street Journal points out, a California state law known as the Unruh Civil Rights Act mandates that "all business establishments of every kind whatsoever" treat every person within the jurisdiction as free and equal regardless of sex, race, religion, marital status and sexual orientation, among other things.The suit against Spark states that, at the time of its filing, individuals wishing to use the Spark dating sites for Christians, Catholics, Mormons, Seventh-day Adventists, military singles and black singles could only choose from two options on the home screens of these services: "a man seeking a woman" or "a woman seeking a man." Last week, approximately 2½ years after the lawsuit was originally filed, Judge Jane L.Spark will also be paying each plaintiff a small settlement of ,000 each, as well as 0,000 in attorneys’ fees for the two men’s lawyers, though the company did not admit to any specific wrongdoing as part of the settlement agreement.“I am gratified that we were able to work with Spark to help ensure that people can fully participate in all the diverse market places that make our country so special, regardless of their sexual orientation,” plaintiffs’ attorney Vineet Dubey, of Custodio & Dubey, LLP, said in a statement.A class-action lawsuit filed in 2013 by two gay men alleged that Spark Networks, which owns Christian Mingle and several other faith-based dating sites, had broken California anti-discrimination laws by making it impossible for same-sex couples to match. (David Silverman/Getty Images)God-loving gay singles have won the right to mingle on the world's most popular Christian dating site — and every other faith-based matchmaking network owned by its parent company, following a California court ruling.Formed in 2017 through the merger of Affinitas Gmb H and Spark Networks, Inc., the company has a presence in 29 countries worldwide and is publicly listed on the NYSE American LLC exchange under the ticker symbol “LOV.” On July 1st, 2019, Spark Networks closed on their previously announced acquisition of Zoosk, Inc., forming North America's second-largest dating company in revenues.
"Spark has engaged in a systemic and intentional pattern and practice of arbitrary discrimination against gays and lesbians throughout California by denying them full and equal services, accommodations, advantages and privileges in connection with many of its commercial dating services," reads the class-action complaint filed in December 2013.The company was sued by the Santa Monica city attorney as well as district attorneys in four counties. Currently, Christian Mingle, which proudly bills itself as the largest online community for Christian singles, requires new users to identify themselves in only one of two ways when creating an account to search for potential paramours: either a man seeking a woman or a woman seeking a man.The combination created a worldwide online dating platform, with brands including Elite Singles, e Darling, Jdate, Christian Mingle, JSwipe, and Attractive World serving a spectrum of users across 29 countries and 15 languages.
On October 3, 2018, Spark was fined 0,000 and ordered to pay 5,000 in restitution in response to complaints that the site was automatically renewing customer accounts without their express consent.
On November 2, 2017, Spark Networks SE (NYSE American: LOV) announced the completion of the previously announced merger of Spark Networks, Inc.